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From Angus Reid Institute

COVID-19: Half want boosters ASAP

One-in-five vaccinated Canadians say they don’t believe the shot is effective at preventing serious illness

July 18, 2022 – An emerging seventh wave of the COVID-19 virus – spurred forth by the BA.5 variant of Omicron – has health officials proclaiming the need for up-to-date vaccination among Canadians.

A new study from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds a population once boisterous about boosters now more hesitant. Three-in-five vaccinated Canadians (61%) say they’re ready and willing to get their next shot when eligible, led by men and women over the age of 54 (73% and 81% respectively).

There is, however, an emerging schism among those willing to continue receiving a COVID-19 inoculation. For those who have already had three or four shots, willingness to keep boosting remains high.

That said, among Canadians who say they have thus far received one or two doses just 17 per cent say they will seek another vaccine dose, while three-in-five say no.

Those who are keen would like their government to speed up the timeline for boosters. Overall, 54 per cent of Canadians say their province should offer a fourth dose to all adults who want one as soon as possible, while one-in-five (18%) would wait until the fall.

Not everyone, however, is convinced that boosters are necessary or even effective. One-in-five (22%) Canadians now say they do not believe that keeping up with vaccinations gives a person protection against either infection or serious illness. Few of those who have received three (7%) or four doses (2%) agree. Vaccine producer Pfizer addressed concerns about this recently, stating that its vaccine has been tweaked to better target the Omicron strain, and that its fall boosters will increase effectiveness. Other major producers are expected to do the same.

Some provinces are considering expanding the eligibility for the second booster to all those over the age of 18. In your opinion, how soon should they do this? (All respondents, n=1,583)

More Key Findings

4th Doses

Seven-in-ten (71%) women over the age of 54 say provinces should roll out fourth doses as soon as possible – the highest number among age and gender combinations. Meanwhile, 36 per cent of all men under the age of 55 say fourth doses are unnecessary entirely.

Albertan Boosters

Albertans are least willing to get a booster dose – 31 per cent say this. Those in B.C. and Atlantic Canada residents are most keen – both at a level of two-thirds.

Annual Boosters

Three-in-five (62%) Canadians say they would be willing to receive a COVID-19 vaccine once a year for as long as necessary, assuming it was recommended by doctors and public health officials.

Survey Methodology

The Angus Reid Institute conducted an online survey from July 13-15 2022 among a representative randomized sample of 1,583 Canadian adults who are members of Angus Reid Forum. For comparison purposes only, a probability sample of this size would carry a margin of error of +/- 2.0 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding. The survey was self-commissioned and paid for by ARI.

For detailed results by age, gender, region, education, and other demographics, click here.

For detailed results by vaccination status, click here.

For detailed results by whether or not respondents would get another booster, click here.

To read the full report, including detailed tables and methodology, click here

Read the questionnaire in English and French.

Images – Braňo/Unsplash

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From the Angus Reid Institute, Canada’s non-profit foundation committed to independent research.

For detailed breakdown of the results, visit angusreid.org

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